Sat. Oct 23rd, 2021

CBN, Keystone Bank To Tender More Documents In Atuche, Ojo’s Alleged N125 bn Fraud Trial

CBN, Keystone Bank To Tender More Documents In Atuche, Ojo’s Alleged N125 bn Fraud Trial

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has signified its intention to tender additional documents used by Mr. Francis Atuche and Charles Ojo, the former Managing Directors of of the defunct BankPHB and Spring Bank Plc, in alleged N125 billion fraud.

EFCC through its prosecutor, Mr. Kemi Pinheiro (SAN) leading Chukwudi Enebeli, tolrld Justice Ayokunle Faji on Friday.

At the resumed trial of Atuche and Ojo, on Friday, Pinheiro (SAN), while informing the court of outcome of subpoena issued to the prosecution, to produce witnesses fro the Apex Bank and keystone Bank Plc, introduced one Eze Ajeigbu, from Keystone Bank, who he said are to collate and prepare more documents, for the officer of the bank that will tender it before the court.

Pinheiro (SAN) however, told the court that the Keystone Bank official, needed more time to collate and prepare the said documents.
 The prosecutor therefore asked the court for a short date, to enable the bank official get the documents prepared.

Pinheiro (SAN) submissions and request was to objected to by the dou of Paul Mgbeoma, who stood in for Mr. Tayo Oyetibo (SAN) and Victor Obari, did not oppose the request.

Consequently, justice Faji adjourned the case till December 7 and 11, 2020, for further trial.

Both Atuche and Ojo are charged before the court on 45 counts charge of conspiracy and illegal and unlawful granting of billions naira of loans to some companies, Futureview Service Limited, Petosan Oil and Gas Limited, Tradjek Nigeria Limited and Extra Oil Limited.

They were accused them of reckless granting of several billions of loans between 2006 and 2009 to Platinum Capital Limited, a company in which they both have interest.

The loans were alleged to have been granted without adequate security, an act the EFCC said violated Section 516 of the Criminal Code Act Cap 38 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

The were further alleged to have conspired to grant several billion naira loans to one Futureview Service Limited “without adequate security and contrary to accepted banking practice”.

They were said to have acted contrary to Section 15(1)(a)(i) of the Failed Bank (Recovery of Debt) and Financial Malpractices in Banks Act Cap F2, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004, and liable to be punished under Section 16(1)(a) of the same Act.

Also allegedly granted loans without adequate security by the defendants were Petosan Oil and Gas Limited, Tradjek Nigeria Limited and Extra Oil Limited.

In one of the counts, both Atuche and Ojo were accused of failing to take all reasonable steps to ensure the correctness of the June 2009 Bank PHB monthly bank returns to the Central Bank of Nigeria.

They were also alleged to have on December 24, 2008 injected the sum of N650m into “Insurance PHB Limited,” contrary to Section 21(2)(a) of the Banks and other Financial Institutions Act Cap B3, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.

The two former banks managing directors have pleaded not guilty to the charges.